UK supermarket chain Morrisons is returning to celebrity ads (previous epics have featured, inter alia, Alan Hansen and Top Gear’s Richard Hammond) and has chosen former Lancashire and England cricketer Andrew ‘Freddie’ Flintoff to front them.
Flintoff is, by all accounts, a genial soul and his all-round skills have been much missed by England since his injury-enforced retirement.
But his recent appearances on the silver screen, in ITV’s Freddie Flintoff Against The World have not been brilliant. The show was so good it was relegated to digital channel ITV 4.
Morrisons, under new CEO Dalton Philips, has shown signs of trying to move upmarket recently, plugging its wine offer and belatedly moving into the middle classes’ chosen form of shopping, online with home deliveries.
In real life Flintoff is not quite the big daft Northern lad he’ll no doubt be depicted as by agency DLKW Lowe. He’s more at home in Guy Ritchie’s posh London pub the Punch Bowl than he is consuming a pie and a pint in urban Lancashire.
Even so it seems a slightly odd choice but maybe Morrisons is trying to have it both ways; trying to recruit more posh Southern types while keeping in with its Northern heartland.